Written by Dr. Gregory Bartha
I met young Mkessa Moses while I was visiting a village secondary school. The school’s founder had recently died, and the school was having problems raising enough money to pay the teachers and provide supplies to the students. Mkessa was short and had a prominent swelling in his upper back – humpback deformity.
In Uganda this is usually caused by TB of the spine which results in collapse of the spinal bones. He was bright and energetic and eager to continue his education. He asked me to visit his home and see his living condition. He was staying in a grass roofed house which leaked whenever it rained and was sleeping on a straw mat. You can imagine how uncomfortable that would be for a person with a spinal deformity.
His elderly grandmother was the only adult I saw living in the compound. We managed to provide a mattress and bed sheets for the boy and bring some food for him and his grandmother.
I am paying his school fees and hope he will be able to advance his education. He has completed his treatment for tuberculosis.